Streamlining Order Processing in Food Distribution with Salesforce
September 21st | 4 min read
Business Operations with Salesforce: Harnessing Real-Time Customer Data
In the competitive world of foodservice distribution, exceptional customer service is not just a luxury – it is a vital component for survival. With restaurants operating on tight margins, any disruptions to their daily operations can have severe consequences.
Streamlining Order Processing with Salesforce
In food service distribution, the alignment between sales orders and operational delivery holds crucial importance. The ability to deliver on time, in full, and at a reasonable cost serves as a key success factor. One might assume that integrating your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Transportation Management System (TMS), and Warehouse Management System (WMS) automatically ensures efficient fulfillment and high service levels. However, this assumption is not always accurate.
From an operations perspective, the TMS plans routes and truck loads based on confirmed orders entered past the established cut-off time. This information is then communicated to the WMS, triggering the picking process accordingly. At first glance, this appears to complete the loop. Any exceptions that arise are managed on the spot, with a focus on balancing costs and meeting customer expectations.
More Than Just a CRM
When our sales team implemented Salesforce, I initially believed it would merely enhance their selling capabilities. However, Salesforce exceeded my expectations by providing sales reps and customer service agents with clear visibility into operations. This led to improved agility and alignment in order tracking, better confirmation of delivery dates, and stricter management of cut-off times.
Salesforce has played a pivotal role in optimizing our sales by leveraging real-time data on incoming product supplies, types, and shelf life. We effectively managed products that required frequent offloading, such as vegetables or fresh meat, ensuring freshness and minimizing waste. By utilizing Salesforce’s instant promotions feature, our sales team achieved impressive results. This optimization strategy not only improved our inventory flow but also enhanced pricing and promotions management, resulting in increased growth and profitability.
Breaking Down Silos with Salesforce
The visibility of sales, service, and operational performance facilitated strategic internal discussions, improved contract negotiations, and fostered better relationships with our product and service providers. Better planning and agility allowed our operations to achieve service levels we had been striving for years to reach with limited success.
In conclusion, Salesforce has proven to be more than just a tool to support our sales and service teams. It’s an orchestration platform for order processing that defines how service can and will be delivered to our clients.
For more information about how Salesforce and LIDD can transform your business operations, get in touch with a LIDD expert today.